Hodgson and Wilshere sum up England win
Saturday, November 15, 2014
Roy Hodgson and Jack Wilshere explained England's second-half switch in beating Slovenia 3-1 and both praised Wayne Rooney, who equalised on his 100th appearance.
Article top media content
• England came from behind to beat Slovenia 3-1 and maintain perfect start
• Roy Hodgson and Jack Wilshere pay tribute to Wayne Rooney on his 100th appearance
• Hodgson explains tactical switch in second half
• Dejan Lazarević happy with Slovenia performance and enjoyed Wembey experience
• Next games: England v Lithuania, Slovenia v San Marino (27 March)
Roy Hodgson, England manager
Games last 90 minutes – you don't always get what you want from the first minute. In the first half we dominated but it was a bit sterile at times, we weren't getting the penetration we were looking for or creating the clear-cut chances we wanted. They were disciplined, well-organised and made life difficult for us.
After Wayne's quick equalising goal the game opened up more, partly due to some fatigue on their side but also the fact we found a way of causing them more problems, and our second-half performance was better than the first. It would have been nice to play that way all the way through. It would be churlish to sit here after a 3-1 victory and criticise the team because in the first half they didn't quite reach the heights.
It was a wonderful evening for [Rooney] – the 100 caps and having the cap presented by Bobby Charlton must have been very very special. To then give a good performance and cap that by scoring the important first goal ... it was a fine piece of play by Jack Wilshere to set him up and a good run in the box. Their goal against the run of play looked harsh but we got straight back into it and were good value in the end for our three goals.
To me as England manager [Rooney] is very important. He is important to English football and it is fitting that on the night where it is all about him, he picks up the cap but he also scores the important first goal and leads England to victory on his 100th game. We are delighted for him.
We had two systems of play up our sleeve for tonight and worked on a situation where without changing personnel Welbeck would go wide and Raheem would go wider and we'd keep three in midfield and we did that second half and it worked well. Danny Welbeck profited strongly from that and we saw a better Raheem Sterling in the second half, he came alive as well.
Jack Wilshere, England midfielder
I would say it was [our toughest game]. They are a good team, they came here and made it difficult for us. The Switzerland game was tough but this was a different type of game – we expected to get the three points, we were at home but they made it difficult for us. You saw at half-time we had to change our formation and credit to them. They came in the second half and put a fight up but we were a bit too strong in the end.
[Rooney's equaliser] was massive. We went in at half-time saying "let's not concede first" because it's always going to be difficult. In the first half we felt we were on top but maybe in the final third we weren't good enough. Defensively we were always solid and the main thing was [after conceding] we bounced back straight away and got two more and are happy with three points.
Wayne has been fantastic for England. I remember when I was 12 at EURO 2004 watching him and having a Rooney shirt – that just shows you what he means to us and what he means to me as a role model. He has been there throughout my England career and he is a great captain.
Dejan Lazarević, Slovenia midfielder
I think we played a good game but when we scored the first goal, we conceded very quickly. When they scored they started to play better and got their second and third goals. We tried till the end but they played better.
We were playing well at 0-0 but when they scored the equaliser, they improved. We know they have a good team and big players. We tried to play our football but they got the win. A draw for us would have been good but it didn't happen in the way we wanted. However, we have a lot of games left to improve.
It was a special day to play at this stadium – it was emotional because you don't see a stadium like this every day. We were very happy to play here and gave it our best and we have to take the positives, keep on working and hopefully win the next match.